Entrepreneurs do not take the risks they do with their time, their money and their reputations in order to secure a comfortable retirement. They do it because that is who they are and what they do best. Some people choose to work at the factory, while others choose to fund, build and run those factories. It’s the chance of a lifetime that outlasts a lifetime. But only those willing, and those with enough faith in themselves and their abilities are willing to take the chance. Some just want more than the highest paying job; they want to create the job, hire others to do the job, sell their creation, look for the next opportunity.
But sometimes the most promising sprouts do not come to fruition. A retirement savings plan can be a Plan B for entrepreneurs. A successful endeavor may take the arc of life to a place where insurance is a minor concern and retirement savings will be inherited by the next generation. But just in case Plan A does not work out, every entrepreneur needs a Plan B.
Mark Twain’s Plan B was writing and lecturing for money. Samuel Langhorne Clemens was a prodigious entrepreneur. He escaped the Civil War and headed west to the silver mines of Nevada. He got rich and went broke as a way of life, but he wrote about it and that was his Plan B. Mark Twain was a creative genius but a terrible businessman. His world tour of 1895, when he was 59-years-old, allowed him to pay off the debts he incurred in self-financing a publishing company. Standup comedy was Mark Twain’s lifeboat in the sea of debt he had amassed.